Md. Firefighter Who Called Mayday Succumbs to Injuries

May 02--A volunteer firefighter has died after being injured in a Reisterstown fire that also killed another man last week.

Gene Kirchner, 25, of the Reisterstown Volunteer Fire Company died early this afternoon at Shock Trauma, a Baltimore County public safety spokeswoman said.

Kirchner was one of the first to respond to the fire April 24 on Hanover Road, and was found unconscious on the second floor when a special county response team arrived, officials said last week. Resident Steven Starr, 58, died in the fire, which remains under investigation.

Kirchner had been a junior firefighter for two years before serving another nine years as a volunteer firefighter, said Craig Hewitt, assistant chief of the Reisterstown Volunteer Fire Company.

"He was selfless, well liked, funny -- got along with everybody," Hewitt said. "He liked helping people."

Funeral arrangements are pending.

alisonk@baltsun.com

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